Community gets first look inside Culinary Institute on hard hat tour

Highlights from the event included a tour led by Chef Miles Huff – Dean of the Institute

Community leaders, elected officials, donors and other guests got their first glimpse inside the Culinary Institute of the South on a recent hard hat tour of the school, currently under construction in Bluffton’s Buckwalter Place.

The tour, held Thursday, June 3, was led by Chef Miles Huff, Dean of the Institute, and included a first look for many inside the 26,000 square-foot facility.

Chef Miles Huff, Dean of the Culinary Institute of the South at Technical College of the Lowcountry, leads the hard hat tour. CI Chef Jackie Orak also pictured.

“This has been a project that’s been a long time coming and is the result of a great collaboration between our partnerships with the school district, the county, the Town of Bluffton, the (TCL) Foundation and college contributions,” said TCL President Richard Gough.

Those involved with economic development in the area who were on hand for Thursday’s tour pointed to the importance of such a program in competing on a national stage for an increasingly sophisticated culinary consumer.

The hospitality and tourism industry is the area’s number one economic driver.

“As they say this tide is going to raise all the ships in the harbor,” said Randy Dolyniuk, TCL Commissioner & Foundation Board Chairman.

Highlights of the tour included a look inside the facility featuring:

  • Two teaching kitchens and two baking labs
  • An amphitheater-style lecture theater with cooking stations for demos and visiting chefs
  • A teaching restaurant and quick service bakery/ café
  • Classrooms and computer labs
  • A resource center
  • The FOODseum, an interactive museum, expected to open to visitors and the public in the fall of 2022
Chef Huff stands on the top row of the amphitheater-style theater

In addition, the two-story building has room for 300 students and offices for faculty and staff members.

“To be able to see the steel, the mortar, to stand on the floors where we’ll be educating students in a few months is extremely exciting,” said Chef Huff.

The institute is set to open in November.

For more information on the school’s degrees and certificate programs or enrollment, visit

On the second floor of the 26,000 square-foot facility.
Participants learn about the FOODseum, an interactive museum, expected to open to visitors and the public in the fall of 2022.